Stephanie Holmes spends a night at Stay of Queenstown
Location: Frankton Rd, but less than a 15-minute walk into town
Style: Chic self-contained apartments with impeccable taste in decor, and views to wow
Perfect for: Extended stays in Queenstown, for skiing, sightseeing and family holidays
Price: Suites from $295 per night. Returning guests receive a 10 per cent discount on their next stay when booking direct.
First impressions: We were met at reception by owner Ingrid and her beautiful black labrador, who both gave us a warm welcome, then walked us to the Tekapo Suite, one of 10 self-contained apartments that make up the Stay complex.
The first thing we noticed was the outstanding views – they of course are stunning pretty much everywhere you look in Queenstown, but Stay's location – on the rise of Frankton Rd looking out to the lake – is really something special. The suite has 180-degree views of Lake Wakatipu, the Remarkables, the golf club and across to Cecil and Walter peaks.
Once we could peel our eyes away from that, we noticed just how lovely was our two-bedroom suite. It has been designed and styled beautifully, providing a comfortable, chic place to spend a few nights in Queenstown.
Rooms: Our suite was made up of open-plan lounge/dining/kitchen area, two bedrooms and a bathroom, along with an outdoor area with table, chairs and large sun umbrella. The living space featured a super comfortable olive-green L-shaped couch and armchair, gas fireplace, and two walls of windows to maximise the views. Bedrooms are configured with double bed in one (with the best views) and twin single beds in the other – both are comfortable and warm.
Ingrid clearly has impeccable taste – small touches all added to the beauty of the suite, including a flowering orchid plant, copious amounts of coffee table books, a bell-jar style chandelier, soft green wool blankets for cosying up on the couch in front of the fire, wooden floors, and snuggly matching robes.
Bathroom: Hastings-made Real World toiletries, which use natural native ingredients and are in large refillable glass bottles, not single-use plastics. Although not a huge space, the bathroom's white tiles with black detailing and clean lines make it modern and appealing.
Food and drink: Breakfast supplies for three days are provided (eggs, bacon, muesli, fruit, bread, porridge, giant muffins, juice), as well as some local treats (cheese, chocolate, crackers, chips, popcorn). There's a full oven and hob, dishwasher, toaster, Nespresso coffee machine and milk warmer, and lovely ceramic plates and bowls to serve it all up in.
Facilities: Parking on-site, free Wi-Fi, and a ski shed, where you can store and dry your snow gear if visiting on a skiing/snowboarding holiday.
In the neighbourhood: For eating out, you are only a short walk from town, where you'll find a multitude of restaurants and bars. Turn left down nearby Suburb St and down the hill to reach the lakeside track – turn left and wander down to the marina for Boatshed Cafe, Cargo and Altitude breweries.
Family friendly: A family would have a really enjoyable stay here – not only are the suites set up to give both parents and kids their own rooms and space away from each other, there is also a cupboard of board games suitable for all ages.
Sustainability: Local producers are used for all supplies, and recyclable materials are used where possible. Bins are lined with compostable bags and food waste is composted for use in the vege garden. Cleaning products are organic and chemical-free. LED lightbulbs are used.
Stay sponsors a beehive in Queenstown Gardens through beethechange.nz, and gives an annual donation to Hospice Southland. They are also committed to Tourism New Zealand's Tiaki Promise (embracing values of kaitiakitanga, manaakitanga and whanaungtanga – tiakinewzealand.com), as well as being members of the New Zealand Tourism Sustainability Commitment.